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Despite his improved performance against Tampa Bay, Marcus Mariota’s status as the starting quarterback will continue to be pondered. His accuracy issues, questionable decision-making, and infuriating tendency to fumble have hindered the passing game.
Kyle Pitts isn’t getting the targets a player of his caliber commands. Drake London isn’t receiving enough opportunities to make plays downfield. From not getting the best out of the two most prolific pass-catchers in the offense to missing high-percentage looks across the middle of the field, it’s become evident the Falcons’ offense can’t reach its full potential with Mariota under center.
Desmond Ridder opened plenty of eyes with his impressive preseason performances. It had to put the coaching staff on notice that he is ready to play sooner rather than later. The third-round pick showed poise and decisiveness in the pocket that you don’t see from many rookie quarterbacks. Looking that pro-ready makes everyone want to witness a rookie play, regardless of their position.
Considering Mariota’s recent struggles and overall limitations, Arthur Smith must seriously consider bringing Ridder into the fold as the starter. A daunting upcoming matchup against San Francisco isn’t the time to do it. After going to battle against DeMeco Ryans’ sensational defense, that is where Smith will have a more favorable schedule to make the massive decision.
Fans weighed in, and they’re pretty evenly split on when Ridder should get a shot at the starting role.
Fans are generally confident the team is headed in the right direction these days, too.
Check back next week for our survey, and weigh in with your thoughts in the comments.
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